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Is this a scam?

(24 Posts)
whatDoYouThinkkk Thu 14-Mar-19 08:53:08

I've name changed.

I'm trying to work out if this was someone messing around? Someone who changed their mind? Or whether it could be some kind of scam?

A bit of background. So I'm currently selling my car. I've got a new job with a company car so no longer need my previous car but not in a rush to sell particularly.

Tuesday night a lady called to arrange to view my car. Viewing arranged for last night. She called off a blocked number. Asked for my address. I said I'd text it to her, and asked for her number. She gave this and I text her my address.
A little bit later I text to say I'd be home earlier if she's like to come earlier (in the daylight).
No response to either message.

I thought I'd maybe written her number down wrong.

Yesterday 15 mins before the scheduled viewing I had a number of calls from a blocked number. But couldn't hear anything.. maybe there was poor service?
I called the number I had text. To get this message "the phone you have called is switched off"
Also text to say I couldn't hear them, if it was them calling.

45 mins later, I get another call. This time I can hear them. They tell me they are at a pub which is half a mile from my house but can't find my house. I give her directions and tell her to call if she has problems finding me.

No more calls. Never had a response to any of the texts.

I tried calling, had the same message about phone being switched off.

No show.

I'd like your opinions on whether this is some kind of scam? Or someone pissing around?

ShatnersWig Thu 14-Mar-19 08:57:01

Could be either. But regardless they aren't genuine.

Hunter037 Thu 14-Mar-19 08:59:17

I dont know how it could be a scam, they don't have any details apart from your address so they can't access your bank account of anything. I would just block the number and also report them to your selling platform, if thats possible.

Easterbunnyiscomingsoon Thu 14-Mar-19 09:02:34

Similar happened to ds when he was selling a bike. Apparently its regular practice for thieves to do this....
They want to know where the vehicle is kept and when you aren't in!!

whatDoYouThinkkk Thu 14-Mar-19 09:09:51

@ShatnersWig I'd gathered that much!

@Hunter037 I was thinking along the lines of what @Easterbunnyiscomingsoon has said

ShatnersWig Thu 14-Mar-19 09:11:39

Well then, why are you asking? Don't mean that in a rude way, but it's clearly dodgy in some way. What do you want to do about it?

Waspnest Thu 14-Mar-19 09:12:55

I agree, either way I wouldn't sell to them, they sound like trouble. Years ago we were trying to get rid of some radiators so put a card in local shop offering them for free (waaay before internet). A bloke rang us twice, once asking for sizes, once asking for our address and arranging a time for collection. He never showed up.

I think a lot of people are just flaky these days and never consider how their actions affect others. In our case we learnt that giving stuff away for free may be a nice idea but it's more hassle than it's worth (just look at freecycle for examples) if you're selling stuff don't be taken in by sob stories etc. And never assume that if someone is keen, desperate to reserve it etc. that it's a done deal until the money is in your hand.

Waspnest Thu 14-Mar-19 09:17:28

I'm a bit confused about the blocked call thing? Is this a number that you've chosen to block or something else?

HarrysOwl Thu 14-Mar-19 09:21:03

Is the car you're selling particularly expensive?

This can be a scam to obtain your address so thieves know where the car is.

whatDoYouThinkkk Thu 14-Mar-19 09:23:00

@ShatnersWig if it's a well known scam, I will report it to the police as I have their number.

ShatnersWig Thu 14-Mar-19 09:25:05

What could the Police do? No actual crime has been committed. If you woke up tomorrow and found your car stolen, then it might be worth passing the number on, otherwise, I don't think there is anything they can do pre-emptively.

PigletJohn Thu 14-Mar-19 09:34:01

The number might be for a PAYG mobile, so the SIM could be in the bin a minute after the car is stolen.

Some people will push you out of the way and drive off while "looking" at the car.

flumpybear Thu 14-Mar-19 09:37:15

I'd report to the police on non emergency line or pop in to your local cop shop

Tinty Thu 14-Mar-19 09:50:17

In future please don't give your address. Arrange for people to view the car in a public place, i.e. Tesco car park.

Make sure you take someone with you to sit in the car whilst you talk to potential buyer else they could jump into the car and steal it whilst you walk around to get into the passenger side.

It is best to not give your address to random people.

HarrysOwl Thu 14-Mar-19 09:55:07

Arrange for people to view the car in a public place, i.e. Tesco car park

If I was buying a car and the seller wanted to meet in Tesco car park, I'd find that REALLY dodgy.

caughtinanet Thu 14-Mar-19 09:57:57

There's not enough info to tell if it's a scam.

You get all kinds of timewasters when you are selling a car, could be that.

The advice above is good, meet prospective buyers in a public place in daylight if possible, take a note of the reg no of the car they come in and take someone with you.

diabeticsanon Thu 14-Mar-19 09:59:54

i wouldn't do it either harry too many alarm bells for me

MadSweeney Thu 14-Mar-19 10:33:17

Tesco car park, or anywhere away from the address of the registered keeper of the car is a HUGE no.

Tinty Thu 14-Mar-19 10:40:21

In a public place like a tesco car park (in the daytime). You should always take someone with you also and then you can judge whether you think the person is dodgy or not.

If they have the car paperwork in their name, also ask for their driving licence to compare and show that it is the same person. Then you know that you are (hopefully, because a V5 in your name does not guarantee that you are the owner), talking to the genuine owner not buying a stolen car.

If you go to someones house, how do you know they are genuine. All a thief has to do is meet you outside a house (not theirs) whilst the owners are out and you would be non the wiser.

Plus what makes you think that going to someone's house is less dangerous than meeting someone in a public place. You could go to an axe murderers house and he could kill you. He is unlikely to get his axe out in Tesco's car park. grin

MadSweeney Thu 14-Mar-19 11:39:05

tinty Citizens Advice disagree....

You should arrange to view the car in daylight, preferably when it’s dry - it’s harder to spot damage to the car if it’s wet.* It’s a good idea to meet at a private seller’s house* so that if something goes wrong after you’ve bought the car you’ll have a record of their address.

And the RAC disagree with you

If you’re buying privately, check that the name of the registered keeper is the same as the person you’re dealing with, and the address is the property you’re buying the car from

I could go on with the AA, Autoexpress, Honest John, Forbes etc

caughtinanet Thu 14-Mar-19 19:11:26

Your advice is for buyers Madsweeny, as a seller you need to protect yourself as you see fit. The OP is selling, she has to find a middle way with buyers but of course she's going to try for what suits her best.

PortiaCastis Thu 14-Mar-19 19:18:12

They were after nicking the car and trying to find out if you were home or not

MadSweeney Thu 14-Mar-19 19:26:41

Your advice is for buyers Madsweeny,

And no buyer with an ounce of sense is going to meet you on Tesco car park.

chilledteacher Thu 14-Mar-19 19:34:41

Get rid. Something like webuyanycar. Sound like thieves - who have your address.

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